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EHS cadets commemorate 9/11 with touching flag ceremony

About 40 cadets in crisp dress blue uniforms went through the militaristic motions of marching, standing and saluting, and though most of them had not yet been born on this day 18 years prior, they honored the fallen with maturity beyond their years.

EHS JROTC Eagle Battalion hosted a ceremony Wednesday morning outside Eisenhower High School honoring victims of the Sept. 11 terror attacks.

JROTC Instructor and retired U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Carlos Taylor watched proudly as his cadets led the ceremony.

“A lot of these kids weren’t even born yet when this happened,” he said, “it’s a good history lesson for them about what happened, and a reminder that they will be tomorrow’s leaders, once people like me step down.”

Four color guard cadets emerged from the rear of the Charlie and Echo companies, marching in a solemn line towards the school’s flag pole. Silently, they surrounded the pole’s base and carefully unfolded first the U.S. flag, then the Oklahoma state flag.

Cadet Lt. Col. Mikayla Whalen helped attached both to a chain and watched as Cadet Command Sgt. Maj. Anthony Clark raised both flags to the top of the pole, then back down to half mast, where they would stay for the day.

EHS band teacher Janette Garton brought a shiny, brass trumpet to her lips and played “Taps” while cadets held a salute to the raised flags. Nearby construction even paused for a minute so as not to interfere with the high-pitched notes, which rang out clearly.

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